reddit cliff notes of the article said:2.6 will launch Star Marine as separate module just like Arena Commander, this was also played by staff of PC Games and they are saying it's much more polished on the FPS side and feels a lot better than current rudimentary FPS in the PTU. - Interesting side-note: they talked about map->s.
2.7 will bring procedural planets and you will be able to travel the whole stanton system and all planets and moons can be directly approached down to the surface.
- They say the new lighting system as part of the procedural planets build looks much more natural.
- They say that approaching the planet looks and technically feels better than with Elite Dangerous.
- You can land anywhere manually, automatic landing gets you to fixed positions i.e. landing zones.
- Microtech and Hurston come in follow-up patches after 2.7
- They aim to have Stanton fully playable i.e. with all stations and landing zones (according to CR about 40 locations) by end of 2016
- There will be more jobs and missions as well.
- Trading will be in by then
- Chris describing that missions accepted up in space stations could lead you eventually down to planet surfaces, not clear if this is going to be in with 2.7 but seemingly something SQ42 will benefit from.
- Planets and moons are revolving around suns, with naturally simulated day and night cycles.
- When flying over the ocean they were noticing that the horizon had a correctly simulated curve.
- Trees and Animals seemingly are planned (edit: doesn't seem to be in with 2.7, sorry) - they have them seemingly setup in pre-made templates they call eco-systems - these can be brushed over the planet surface, some magic blends the transitions to make it look naturally and consistent.
- Planetary surface and topograhy details are controlled by a dynamical LOD system.
- Some pop-up was visible during the planetary approach but they described it as impressive regardless.
- They were also impressed with the cloud system, which wasn't just a simple texture layer but seemingly is described what I assume is volumetric, i.e. they have deepth and height and impact visibility, leading to mountain crests piercing through clouds and valleys being covered.
- They are writing that there isn't any artificially restricted view range, visibility is rather a result from the volumetric calculation of the athmosphere.
- Parallax-Occlusion maps with dynamic tessellation is used for the surface details.
- GTX 980 was used with 100 fps on the planetary surface, so performance seems to be pretty good already, sorry, that was just editor performance - in-game performance was 45fps
- Some stuff about the subsumption-AI saying NPCs might have hobbies and a virtual mind, allowing them to remember the player or be influenced in his opinions by the player. To avoid performance issues, they seemingly control the update cycles for NPC AI based on player proximitiy i.e. update cycles go to 1hz instead of 60hz if no one is around.